Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center Commander Meets with Dahlgren Training Partners

US Navy

DAHLGREN, Va. – Rear Adm. Christopher Alexander, commander, Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center (SMWDC), visited the Center for Surface Combat Systems (CSCS) and its co-located learning site, AEGIS Training and Readiness Center (ATRC), on 15 June, as part of his trip to Dahlgren, Va.

“Several of our learning sites, including ATRC, are involved in the training of SMWDC’s Warfare Tactics Instructors [WTIs],” explained Capt. Dave Stoner, CSCS’ commanding officer. “WTIs are junior surface warfare officers, ideally selected for the program in between division officer tours or immediately thereafter, who go through a WTI baseline course through SMWDC, followed by an advanced course of instruction. These courses include training in our Combined IAMD / Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Trainers (CIATs) in San Diego and Norfolk, Va. and Reconfigurable Combat Information Center Trainer (RCT) at ATRC.”

Capt. Russ Sanchez, ATRC’s commanding officer, demonstrated the RCT capabilities and emphasized how it delivers a warfighting training curriculum that is realistic, relevant, and just as complex as the threat environment the WTIs will face when deployed aboard their ships.

“The overall purpose of the RCT is to provide watchstanders a state-of-the-art training lab to detect, control and engage simulated modern threats in challenging environments,” Sanchez said. “This is how we achieve mission readiness. This is how we train warfighters to fight and win.”

The RCT is one of many training systems that were developed, funded, and delivered as part of the Director, Surface Warfare’s, OPNAV N96, program of record, Surface Training Advanced Virtual Environment-Combat Systems (STAVE-CS), which was introduced in 2015 as a means to provide better quality training for Navy Officers and Sailors.

“It was important for me to observe the training first-hand that our Dahlgren partners provide to our WTIs,” Alexander said. “I was impressed with the overall training curriculum and appreciate ATRC’s role in WTI development.”

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